Back issues continue to plague Americans of all ages and sizes. In fact, roughly 65 million Americans recently experienced back pain.
Even more alarming is that 16 million people are dealing with chronic back pain. These individuals are struggling daily. Some turn to daily pain medication to ease their symptoms.
The good news is that you can visit a chiropractor to solve your problems. Today’s chiropractors offer many services to ease your back pain. One of those services is called a chiropractic adjustment.
Read on to learn how often you should get a chiropractic adjustment. Explore topics such as chiropractic treatment and how your doctor will develop a treatment plan for you.
What Does a Chiropractor Do?
Many people know that a chiropractor treats back pain. However, they are unaware of how extensive their knowledge base and treatment plans are. Therefore, before diving into adjustments and realignments, it is important to define what a chiropractor does.
A chiropractor starts by taking your medical history. Then, they perform a physical examination to see if there are any issues with your back. In some cases, diagnostic imaging may be called for to identify issues under the surface.
Based on the results of the examination and testing, the chiropractor will recommend a treatment plan. This often includes spinal manipulation and adjustment.
In addition, the chiropractor may provide nutritional counseling. In many cases, obesity or excessive weight contributes to back pain. Losing weight can relieve pressure on the back and increase mobility.
Also, chiropractors may prescribe physical therapy or exercise plans. The goal here is to increase range of motion and strengthening muscles to prevent injury.
The chiropractor may prescribe other treatments depending on the condition. For instance, therapeutic ultrasound is used to treat soft tissue injuries in and around the back. Electrical stimulation is another technique used for chronic pain conditions.
Spinal decompression is another technique used by chiropractors. Here, your chiropractor stretches the spine using a traction table. Massage therapy is a technique used to reduce inflammation and soft tissue pain as well.
What Type of Patients Does a Chiropractor See?
The chiropractor sees many different types of patients. For example, many pregnant women see a chiropractor to deal with their body’s changes and their impact on the back.
Chiropractors deal with back injuries suffered by athletes. They also handle worker’s compensation injuries and assist in physical rehabilitation programs.
Who Should Not Receive Spinal Realignment or Adjustment?
It is not medically recommended for certain patients to receive a spinal realignment or adjustment. This is why it is so important that the chiropractor carefully reviews your medical history.
For example, patients with osteoporosis or inflammatory arthritis generally do not receive spinal realignments. The chiropractor may need to make alternate plans for a patient that takes blood-thinning medication. Lastly, cancer patients require approval from their oncologist before receiving chiropractic care.
What Are the Benefits of Chiropractic Care?
Many people assume that the benefits of chiropractic care are limited to back pain. While chiropractic treatment is known to ease pain and improve range of motion in the back, there are other benefits.
Your chiropractic treatment may also ease neck pain. In addition, many patients and medical studies show reduced frequency and severity of headaches. Lastly, the moderate pressure applied by chiropractors is known to help osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia.
Perhaps the greatest benefit is an improved quality of life. With recurring chiropractic treatment, patients may be able to return to work or play sports again. For some, easing chronic pain and making life’s daily tasks tolerable is all they are seeking.
What Is a Chiropractic Adjustment?
An adjustment takes place when a chiropractor applies a moderate amount of force to the spinal joints. The force applied is controlled and sudden. The chiropractor typically uses their hands; however, small instruments are sometimes used.
A trained professional must apply this force. A serious back injury could ensue if an untrained person attempts to replicate an adjustment procedure.
The adjustment starts when the patient lies face down on a padded chiropractic table. The patient may be placed in different positions depending on the location of the back pain.
It is common for patients to hear noises during the procedure. Back cracking and popping indicate that spinal joints were misaligned. The cracking and popping noises are indicative of a correction taking place.
You may feel sore after the procedure is done. Fatigue and headaches are also possible in some cases.
However, these negative side effects are only temporary and last no more than a few days. From then on, the benefits of reduced pain and improved functionality take effect.
How Often Should You Get an Adjustment?
Now you are up to speed on what a chiropractor does and how an adjustment is performed. The next big question is how often you should get an adjustment?
The answer varies depending on the chiropractor’s physical evaluation and diagnostic testing. In addition, the nature of the injury plays a big role in frequency determination.
Some patients only see the chiropractor after a back injury or in the presence of pain. A chiropractic adjustment provides the relief they are looking for. For these patients, a recurring follow-up appointment may not be necessary.
Other patients require weekly or biweekly visits to the chiropractor. These recurring appointments are necessary until the back condition improves.
The frequency of visits is tailorable based on how the patient responds to the treatment. If the situation improves, the chiropractor may scale back appointments to occur less frequently.
Schedule Your Visit to a Chiropractor Today
If you are dealing with chronic or acute back pain, it is time to schedule a visit to the chiropractor. They will assess your condition and use diagnostic testing to determine the issue.
Then, the chiropractor will consider using a range of different techniques to solve the problem. In many cases, a chiropractic adjustment is the prescribed treatment. Some patients require recurring visits, while others see the improvement they are looking for in a single time.
If you are interested in a chiropractic adjustment, contact us today to schedule an appointment.